State Dept. urges Nigeria to reverse Twitter ban

The United States on Thursday condemned Nigeria’s move to suspend Twitter in the country after its president had a post removed by the platform.

“Unduly restricting the ability of Nigerians to report, gather, and disseminate opinions and information has no place in a democracy,” State Department spokesperson Ned Price said in a statement. “Freedom of expression and access to information both online and offline are foundational to prosperous and secure democratic societies.”

Twitter deleted a post by President Muhammadu Buhari last week for violating its policy on abusive behavior.

The post appeared to threaten secessionist groups in the southeast of Nigeria that had attacked government offices, which the platform determined should be taken down.

On Friday, the government announced via Twitter that the platform would be suspended. The next day the country’s attorney general announced that Nigerians dodging that ban would be prosecuted.